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ICD-10 Assessments: Are They Worth It?

February 1, 2012
by Jennifer Prestigiacomo
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One organization gets a top-level view to uncover documentation, reimbursement challenges and opportunities

East Jefferson will be working toward developing a concurrent system and process interoperability for ICD-9 and ICD-10 transactions. The hospital also plans to implement a translation tool, but according to Schwyn, the market is still dramatically changing to address this requirement and current mapping tools, like the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid General Equivalency Mapping (GEM) tool, are not robust enough. Over the next couple of months, the organization is also prioritizing a selection process for a computer assisted coding (CAC) tool to help prepare coders. Also during this time, the organization will be structuring its multi-disciplinary leadership team and getting operational workgroups engaged. Later this year, an initial wave of education for clinical documentation will be provided. Contingent on vendor readiness, East Jefferson hopes to have its IT remediation finished by the third quarter and then start testing in Q1 2013.

For more on East Jefferson General Hospital’s ICD-10 assessment, check out this Healthcare Informatics podcast with Bob Schwyn.



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Assessments. Are they worth it? Clearly a rhetorical question. If you do not know where you are, how are you going to get to where you need to be? The biggest problem with the ICD-10 transition is fear of the unknown. While the assessment will not uncover all the unknowns, it will go a long way toward exposing the depth of the issues. Having it done by an outside consultant brings a breath of experience from other institutions that may be overlooked by internal resources. It is a needed step and should be done already. If not, now is the time to lock in vendors, before the really knowledgeable folks are gone.